The news many Badgers basketball fans were expecting finally came down on Thursday afternoon. Badgers sophomore guard and Wooden Award finalist Johnny Davis officially announced he will be leaving Wisconsin and declaring for the 2022 NBA Draft.
"After talking it over with my coaches and my family, we thought [entering the draft] would be the best decision for me" - Davis said on ESPN's NBA Today about how he reached his decision.
Davis averaged 19.7 PPG this season along with 8.2 rebounds per game, becoming the highest average scorer over a full season for the Badgers since Michael Finley. Davis went from playing part-time minutes his freshman season to a full-time starter and the centerpiece of an upstart Badgers squad. Prior to the season, the Badgers were picked to finish 10th in the Big Ten Conference. Instead, they won a share of the Big Ten regular season title and earned a 3 seed in the NCAA Tournament. A large part of that was due to the breakout of Johnny Davis.
The Maui Invitational was where we really started to see the star power of Davis on full display, where he scored 20+ points in each of three games, including a 30 point performance against a strong Houston team. Davis had a massive 37 point game against Purdue on January 3rd.
Towards the end of the season, Davis was struggling a little bit as he attracted a lot of attention from opposing defenses, but he still showed the ability to completely take over a game. His ability to do so, combined with his defensive prowess, penchant for grabbing rebounds, and ability to score often make him a top NBA Draft prospect.
Most NBA mock drafts and projections have Davis as a lottery selection, going somewhere in the first 14 picks. Many mock drafts have him going in the Top 10.
Davis provided Badgers fans with plenty of memories and incredible moments this season and he's likely going to be Wisconsin's first NBA Lottery selection since Frank Kaminsky in 2015.